You could see my favorite shots from Rock That Swing 2010. Out of almost 4000 shots. And has some more interesting shots.
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In Hungarian we say “a good many people can fit in small spaces” – let’s try it!
The event had around 700 participants. And would be great to have a memory of this crowd. The organizer of the event asked me to have a big group photo.
Well, 700 words won’t enough to tell you how much challenges me and my assistant faced. However only the 700 smiles left!
The other 2 photos shows the teachers of the Festival. You can guess: lots of challenges then, lots of smiles now :)
Is it possible to have free time in such a Festival?
You have program from 10 till 3-5 in the morning. Even if you have the possibility to not dance no one can record it. As the photographer is even more busy. And he might need some sleep, food, …
However we could manage it somehow :) Here comes some stolen moments where we have fun, relax – beside dancing.
Such a big Festival has more special guests. Let me introduce Nicolle Rochelle!
She is a five languages speaking dancer and musical performer. She studied Josephine Baker’s life for 15 years and immediately became connected to her. She is playing the role of Josephine is a famous musical in Paris (http://www.alarecherchedejosephine.fr).
In the camp she performed and taught dancing. One of her class was really easygoing so I could make a series of pictures of her without disturbing the class.
One of the special guest of Rock That Swing was the living legend Chazz Young!
“Chazz became serious about dancing at the age of 12. Had it not been for his mother taking him to see his father perform, he may not have ever followed his father into the business. He enrolled in the famous Harlem dance school, Mary Bruce, and was with the school until he was seventeen. His father introduced him to a dear friend, Norma Miller, who was looking for some dancers. He performed with Norma Miller’s dancing troupe at the famous Apollo Theater with famous bands like Count Basie. He traveled extensively with the Norma Miller Dance Troupe to the likes of London, Australia, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
In the 50′s and 60′s with the influx of Rock and Roll, partner dancing slowed down in the United States. Chazz married a dancer from the Norma Miller Dance Troupe and fathered four children. Like his father, Chazz taught dance while working for the New York postal service for 26 years. Currently Chazz lives in Las Vegas and teaches at the Austin Dancing School, which originated in New York. He continues to actively perform, choreograph and teach internationally. He has traveled to the famous Herräng Dance Camp, Sweden, to teach since the early 90′s.”
Today he is 77 year YOUNG – as he likes to tell. He teaches during the day & performs during the night. No word for describing this!
One of the higlight of Rock That Swing festival was the concert of Ray Collins’ Hot Club.
From www.jumpingfrom6to6.com: “The Ray Collins’ Hot Club, a german bunch of wild guys which signed their first album in 2001 -“Shaking That Boogie”- and which since became a reference. Imagine a band which could play to perfection a mixture of 40 and 50′ s Jump-blues, swing, jive and of rock’ roll with authenticity and an overflowing energy while developing their own style and composing some solid songs. A band which could set a ballroom on fire with only the first bars of a brass section.”
What I can tell you guys: it is true!
More info about the band: www.the-hot-club.com
One of the specialty of Rock That Swing is the high number of live band.
Originally people danced swing strictly for live music. Nowadays we mostly dance for DJs music selection however the main reason is that we are short of money :(
Rock That Swing festival provides sometimes 4 live bands during one night!
As the event is focusing on dance the lighting was not as special as on concerts still many times it was fine to give the picture the live music feeling!
On these pictures you can see: Jive Romeros; Safe, Sane & Single; Jump 4 Joy
Perhaps the pictures suggest something else, still we go for such festivals to dance.
Not a few. A lot. Even more. All night. Until 5 at least! Until we drop out.
As watching great dancers makes you feel good. Dancing make you feel great. That is what you can read from the faces in the series!
We had 4 parties, 3 after parties, sometimes 2 dance floors. A small taster about it!
Many of us love to be in the center having the spotlights!
Performances were restricted to teachers. So what can you do to have the audience’s focus on you? Do not panic!
First of all they had many competitions – for boogie people, for lindy people, for fast feet people, …
Is it not enough? Join one of the jams where people form a big circle and he best dancers enter it to show off.
As all the dancers were really interested most of these events were packed having only a small circle. So I had to use extreme wide angle in order to get the full picture. The might distort people in the corners – sorry about it!
No matters what happens dance performances must happen.
Did not start well. Because of snowing many flights of the teachers had been delayed, canceled. Some of them did not arrive in time – or just some minutes before the show. Some teachers were sick.
However the audience could not see that at all. Where you have so many talented dancers they can come up with a solution in a short time and make the people happy!